Hermes Explains

Thirty Questions about Western Esotericism

Marco Pasi, Peter Forshaw, Wouter Hanegraaff,
Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. 2019


ESSWE7 conference marks the 20th anniversary of the centre for History of Hermetic Philosophy and Related Currents (HHP). On this occasion, an anthology is being published with contributions from thirty experts from the field of Esotericism. Each article addresses questions about thirty basic issues raised in the subjects studied within this field. The volume is jointly edited by Wouter J. Hanegraaff, Peter Forshaw, and Marco Pasi and it is published from Amsterdam University Press. This book will be officially launched during the Reception ceremony of the ESSWE7 conference (2 July, 19:30-21:30). All the conference participants will be given a free copy of the book.

(Text from the publisher)

Table of contents

Frontmatter pp 1-4
Contents pp 5-8

Introduction: Thirty red pills from Hermes Trismegistus pp 9-12

Aren’t we Living in a Disenchanted World? pp 13-20

Esotericism, That’s for White Folks, Right? pp 21-28

Surely Modern Art is not Occult? It is Modern pp 29-38

Is it True that Secret Societies are Trying to Control the World? pp 39-46

Numbers are Meant for Counting, Right? pp 47-53
Wasn’t Hermes a Prophet of Christianity who Lived Long Before Christ? pp 54-60
Weren’t Early Christians up Against a Gnostic Religion? pp 61-69

The Imagination… You Mean Fantasy, Right? pp 80-87

Weren’t Medieval Monks Afraid of Demons? pp 88-94

What does Popular Fiction have to do with the Occult? pp 95-104

Isn’t Alchemy a Spiritual Tradition? pp 105-112

Music? What does that have to do with Esotericism? pp 113-119

Why all that Satanist Stuff in Heavy Metal? pp 120-126
Religion can’t be a joke, right? pp. 127-136
Isn’t Esotericism Irrational? pp 137-144

Rejected Knowledge…: So you mean that Esotericists are the Losers of History? pp 145-152

The Kind of Stuff Madonna Talks about – that’s not Real Kabbala, is it? pp 153-160

Shouldn’t Evil Cults that Worship Satan be Illegal? pp 161-167

Is Occultism a Product of Capitalism? pp 168-17

Can Superhero Comics Really Transmit Esoteric Knowledge? pp 177-183

Are Kabbalistic Meditations all about Ecstasy? pp 184-190

Isn’t India the Home of Spiritual Wisdom? pp 191-197

If People Believe in Magic, isn’t that just Because they aren’t Educated? p 198-206

But what does Esotericism have to do with Sex? p 207-215

Is there such a Thing as Islamic Esotericism? pp 216-224

Doesn’t Occultism Lead Straight to Fascism? pp 225-23

A Man who Never Died, Angels Falling from the Sky…: What is that Enoch Stuff all about? pp 232-242

Is there any Room for Women in Jewish Kabbalah? pp 243-251

Surely Born-again Christianity has Nothing to do with Occult Stuff like Alchemy? pp 252-260

Bibliography pp 261-304

Contributors to this Volume pp 305-308

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